Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editors: Andrew Griffin, Helen Ostovich
Not Peer Reviewed

All's Well That Ends Well (Folio 1, 1623)


All's Well that Ends Well
251
2655Par Pray you sir deliuer me this paper.
Clo Foh, prethee stand away: a paper from fortunes
close-stoole, to giue to a Nobleman. Looke heere he
comes himselfe.

Enter Lafew

2660Clo Heere is a purre of Fortunes sir, or of Fortunes
Cat, but not a Muscat, that ha's falne into the vncleane
fish-pond of her displeasure, and as he sayes is muddied
withall. Pray you sir, vse the Carpe as you may, for he
lookes like a poore decayed, ingenious, foolish, rascally
2665knaue. I doe pittie his distresse in my smiles of comfort,
and leaue him to your Lordship.
Par My Lord I am a man whom fortune hath cruel-
ly scratch'd.
Laf And what would you haue me to doe? 'Tis too
2670late to paire her nailes now. Wherein haue you played
the knaue with fortune that she should scratch you, who
of her selfe is a good Lady, and would not haue knaues
thriue long vnder? There's a Cardecue for you: Let the
Iustices make you and fortune friends; I am for other
2675businesse.
Par I beseech your honour to heare mee one single
word,
Laf you begge a single peny more: Come you shall
ha't, saue your word.
2680Par My name my good Lord is Parrolles
Laf You begge more then word then. Cox my pas-
sion, giue me your hand: How does your drumme?
Par O my good Lord, you were the first that found
mee.
2685Laf Was I insooth? And I was the first that lost thee.
Par It lies in you my Lord to bring me in some grace
for you did bring me out.
Laf Out vpon thee knaue, doest thou put vpon mee
at once both the office of God and the diuel: one brings
2690thee in grace, and the other brings thee out. The Kings
comming I know by his Trumpets. Sirrah, inquire fur-
ther after me, I had talke of you last night, though you
are a foole and a knaue, you shall eate, go too, follow.
Par I praise God for you.

2695
Flourish. Enter King, old Lady, Lafew, the two French
Lords, with attendants
Kin We lost a Iewell of her, and our esteeme
Was made much poorer by it: but your sonne,
As mad in folly, lack'd the sence to know
2700Her estimation home.
OldLa 'Tis past my Liege,
And I beseech your Maiestie to make it
Naturall rebellion, done i'th blade of youth,
When oyle and fire, too strong for reasons force,
2705Ore-beares it, and burnes on.
Kin My honour'd Lady,
I haue forgiuen and forgotten all,
Though my reuenges were high bent vpon him,
And watch'd the time to shoote.
2710Laf This I must say,
But first I begge my pardon: the yong Lord
Did to his Maiesty, his Mother, and his Ladie,
Offence of mighty note; but to himselfe
The greatest wrong of all. He lost a wife,
2715Whose beauty did astonish the suruey
Of richest eies: whose words all eares tooke captiue,
Whose deere perfection, hearts that scorn'd to serue,
Humbly call'd Mistris.
Kin Praising what is lost,
2720Makes the remembrance deere. Well, call him hither,
We are reconcil'd, and the first view shall kill
All repetition: Let him not aske our pardon,
The nature of his great offence is dead,
And deeper then obliuion, we do burie
2725Th' incensing reliques of it. Let him approach
A stranger, no offender; and informe him
So 'tis our will he should.
Gent I shall my Liege.
Kin What sayes he to your daughter,
2730Haue you spoke?
Laf All that he is, hath reference to your Highnes.
Kin Then shall we haue a match. I haue letters sent
me, that sets him high in fame.

Enter Count Bertram
2735Laf He lookes well on't.
Kin I am not a day of season,
For thou maist see a sun-shine, and a haile
In me at once: But to the brightest beames
Distracted clouds giue way, so stand thou forth,
2740The time is faire againe.
Ber My high repented blames
Deere Soueraigne pardon to me.
Kin All is whole,
Not one word more of the consumed time,
2745Let's take the instant by the forward top:
For we are old, and on our quick'st decrees
Th' inaudible, and noiselesse foot of time
Steales, ere we can effect them. You remember
The daughter of this Lord?
2750Ber Admiringly my Liege, at first
I stucke my choice vpon her, ere my heart
Durst make too bold a herauld of my tongue:
Where the impression of mine eye enfixing,
Contempt his scornfull Perspectiue did lend me,
2755Which warpt the line, of euerie other fauour,
Scorn'd a faire colour, or exprest it stolne,
Extended or contracted all proportions
To a most hideous obiect. Thence it came,
That she whom all men prais'd, and whom my selfe,
2760Since I haue lost, haue lou'd; was in mine eye
The dust that did offend it.
Kin Well excus'd:
That thou didst loue her, strikes some scores away
From the great compt: but loue that comes too late,
2765Like a remorsefull pardon slowly carried
To the great sender, turnes a sowre offence,
Crying, that's good that's gone: Our rash faults,
Make triuiall price of serious things we haue,
Not knowing them, vntill we know their graue.
2770Oft our displeasures to our selues vniust,
Destroy our friends, and after weepe their dust:
Our owne loue waking, cries to see what's don,e
While shamefull hate sleepes out the afternoone.
Be this sweet Helensknell, and now forget her.
2775Send forth your amorous token for faire Maudlin
The maine consents are had, and heere wee'l stay
To see our widdowers second marriage day:
Which better then the first, O deere heauen blesse,
Or, ere they meete in me, O Nature cesse.
2780Laf Come on my sonne, in whom my houses name
Must be digested: giue a fauour from you
To sparkle in the spirits of my daughter,
That
252
All's Well that Ends Well